BUFFALO, N.Y. — The National Weather Service in Buffalo sounded the warning about a Christmas blizzard. One month later, 2 On Your Side asked the experts how they would review this storm.
Warning Coordination Meteorologist Mike Fries said, "Our office was calling it a generational storm. We typically think of storms being generational, every 30 years or so."
They looked back through the books and discovered the 2022 storm was, "Actually the 150th anniversary of a very large Christmas blizzard in the 1800s, actually the 1870s. I don't want to say it's a 150-year Christmas event, but that's just what happened."
It will be studied. Fries said, "The bigger events that occur we always continuously look at. I think to just the magnitude of that (storm) it will probably be a system that gets a lot of attention from the larger research community via academia and probably presentations at meteorological conferences for years to come."
The lakeshore flooding, high winds peaking at 79 mph, and how long the blizzard lasted dumping a massive amount of snow will be reviewed.
The NWS recorded the largest snowfall totals in North Tonawanda. "For a lake effect event is very unusual," Fries said.
The 1977 blizzard was noteworthy because the lake was frozen and the majority of the snow blew off of the lake, and while it lasted longer, Fries said what we encountered last month was different with the peak winds and much more snow.